Carlo Ponti

Carlo Ponti

Infobox Actor
birthname = Carlo Fortunaro Pietro Ponti
birthdate = birth date|1912|12|11|df=y
birthplace = Magenta, Lombardy, Italy
deathdate = death date and age|2007|1|9|1912|12|11|df=y
deathplace = Geneva, Switzerland
spouse = Giuliana Fiastri (1946-1957)
Sophia Loren (1957-1962)
Sophia Loren (1966-2007)
children = Guendalina Ponti
Alex Ponti (b.1953)
Carlo Ponti Jr. (b.1968)
Edoardo Ponti (b.1973)
academyawards = Best Foreign Language Film
1956 "La strada"

Carlo Ponti (11 December 191210 January 2007) was an Italian film producer with over 140 production credits, and the husband of Italian actress Sophia Loren.


Ponti was born in Magenta, Italy and studied law at the University of Milan. He joined his father's law firm in Milan and became involved in the film business through negotiating contracts.cite news
last =Exshaw
first =John
title =Carlo Ponti
publisher =The Independent
date =12 January 2007
url =
accessdate =2007-01-12
] Ponti attempted to establish a film industry in Milan in 1940 and produced Mario Soldati's "Piccolo Mondo Antico" there, starring Alida Valli, in her first notable role. The film dealt with the Italian struggle against the Austrians for the inclusion of northeastern Italy into the Kingdom of Italy during the Risorgimento. The film was successful, because it was easy to see "the Austrians as Germans" during World War II.cite news
last =Martin
first =Douglas
title =Carlo Ponti
publisher ="The New York Times"
date =11 January 2007
url =
accessdate =2007-01-14
] As a result, he was briefly jailed for undermining relations with Nazi Germany.cite web
title =Movie Producer Carlo Ponti Dies
publisher =Kansas City Star
date =2007-01-10
url =
accessdate = 2007-01-14

Ponti accepted an offer from Lux Film company in Rome in 1941, where he produced a series of commercially successful films featuring the comedian Totò.cite news
last =Lane
first =John Francis
title =Carlo Ponti
publisher ="The Guardian"
date =11 January 2007
url =,,1987651,00.html
accessdate =2007-01-14
] In 1954 he had his greatest artistic success with the production of Federico Fellini's "La strada". However, Fellini denied Ponti's role in its success and said that "La Strada was made in spite of Ponti and De Laurentiis." He produced Visconti's "Boccaccio '70" in 1962, "Marriage Italian Style" in 1964, and "Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow" in 1965. He produced his most popular and financially successful film, David Lean's "Doctor Zhivago" in 1965. He subsequently produced three notable films with Michelangelo Antonioni, "Blowup" in 1966, "Zabriskie Point" in 1970 and "The Passenger" in 1974.

Personal life

In 1946 he married Giuliana Fiastri.cite news
title =Carlo Ponti
publisher ="The Times"
date =11 January 2007
url =,,3-2540805,00.html
accessdate =2007-01-12
] Around 1950, Ponti, while serving as a judge in a beauty contest, met a minor actress named Sofia Lazzaro. He subsequently cast her in films such as "Anna" (1951). In 1952 his friend, Goffredo Lombardo, head of production at Titanus, changed Lazzaro's name to Sophia Loren. In 1957, Ponti obtained a Mexican divorce from his first wife and married Sophia Loren by proxy. Divorce was still forbidden in Italy and he was informed that he would be charged with bigamy if he returned to Italy and Loren would be charged with "concubinage". Ponti co-produced several films in Hollywood starring Loren, and establishing her fame, although most were box-office failures. In 1960 Ponti and Loren returned to Italy and when summoned to court, denied being married. Later, they had the marriage annulled in 1962, after which he arranged with his first wife, Giuliana, that the three of them move to France which at that time allowed divorce and become French citizens. In 1965 Giuliana Ponti divorced her husband, allowing Ponti to marry Loren in 1966 in a civil wedding in Sèvres. [cite web
title=Sophia Loren and Carlo Ponti Marriage Profile
author=Sheri & Bob Stritof
] [cite web
title=Italian Producer Carlo Ponti
publisher=Associated Press
quote=archived at TV Fan Forums
date=Jan 2007

Two unsuccessful attempts were made to kidnap Ponti in 1975, including one involving an attack on his car with gunfire.

Ponti was tried in absentia in 1979 for smuggling money and works of art abroad and fined 22 billion lire and sentenced to four years in prison. He did not attend the hearing, as his French nationality made him immune from extradition. He was finally cleared of the charges in 1990.


Ponti died in Geneva, Switzerland and was survived by Loren, his sons Carlo (a former child actor now a music conductor and music director of the San Bernardino Symphony [cite web
title =San Bernardino Symphony Orchestra
publisher =San Bernardino Symphony Orchestra
date =2006-07
url =
accessdate = 2007-01-14
] ), Alessandro, a film producer, and Edoardo Ponti, a film director, and a daughter, Guendalina. His body rests in Magenta.Fact|date=November 2007


*"Piccolo mondo antico" (1940)
*"A Yank in Rome" (1946)
*"Hey Boy" (1948)
*"Campane a martello" (1949)
*"The White Line" (1950)
*"Toto the Third Man" (1951)
*"Il padrone del vapore" (1951)
*"Europa '51" (1952)
*"Easy Years" (1953)
*"Carosello napoletano" (1954)
*"La strada" (1954)
*"Mambo" (1954)
*"Un americano a Roma" (1954)
*"L'oro di Napoli" (1954)
*"Attila" (1954)
*"War and Peace" (1956)
*"Il ferroviere" (1956)
*"The Black Orchid" (1958)
*"That Kind of Woman" (1959)
*"Heller in Pink Tights" (1960)
*"A Breath of Scandal" (1960)
*"Two Women" (1960)
*"Lola" (1961)
*"A Woman Is a Woman" (1961)
*"Léon Morin, prêtre" (1961)
*"Cléo from 5 to 7" (1962)
*"Boccaccio '70" (1962)
*"Le Doulos" (1962)
*"L'isola di Arturo" (1962)
*"The Empty Canvas" (1963)
*"Les Carabiniers" (1963)
*"Contempt" (1963)
*"Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow" (1963)
*"Marriage Italian Style" (1964)
*"Operation Crossbow" (1965)
*"The 10th Victim" (1965)
*"Doctor Zhivago" (1965)
*"Closely Watched Trains" (1965, uncredited)
*"Blowup" (1966)
*"The Firemen's Ball" (1967, uncredited)
*"Smashing Time" (1967, uncredited)
*"Zabriskie Point" (1970)
*"What?" (1972)
*"Flesh for Frankenstein" (1973)
*"The Passenger" (1974)
*"L'infermiera" (1975)
*"Brutti, sporchi e cattivi" (1976)
*"The Cassandra Crossing" (1976)
*"A Special Day" (1977)



*imdb name | id=0690638 | name=Carlo Ponti

NAME=Ponti, Carlo
SHORT DESCRIPTION=Italian film producer
DATE OF BIRTH=December 11 1912
PLACE OF BIRTH=Magenta, Italy
DATE OF DEATH=January 9 2007
PLACE OF DEATH=Geneva, Switzerland

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